Last week I was having breakfast at the Waffle House in Lexington, VA which is one of my favorite breakfast places and I heard someone say with pride, “I work in retail." It was evident that this person was so proud of her job and her company. There also happens to be a young server at this Waffle House named Hailey who takes great pride in her work and is great at making customers feel welcome. She also is a single mom who goes to college on her off days and beams with pride every day about her adorable baby girl. As I sat there listening to the retail worker speak proudly about her work and watching Hailey bring smiles to her customers, I was thinking how wonderful pride can be and how having pride in what we do and how we approach life is such a powerful mindset.
The starting point of all personal improvement and development is self- awareness. The more in tune we are with what we are great at and what is still developing, the more we can ensure we are focusing on where we as leaders need to get better. If as stated in last week’s blog, one of our primary roles as field leaders is to be a "private tutor” of selling expertise, then we have to acknowledge that we cannot coach what we do not know. With regards to coaching selling, Delta Point has developed an important concept that we call, "Coaching IQ”.
One of my closest friends and a person I deeply admire is Buzz Williams, Head Basketball Coach at Virginia Tech. Buzz is a huge quote person and if you follow him on Twitter you will have the privilege of learning from his voracious reading habit. He shared a quote with me one day from Hall of Fame Coach George Raveling that really resonated with me. "Be big enough every day to face the truth about yourself, your team, your family and your life."
“The aim of life is self-development. To realize one's nature perfectly—that is what each of us is here for.” [Oscar Wilde] If this is the first time you’ve read or heard this quote, you might assume these words of wisdom are from a contemporary—one who feels quite at home in our self-absorbed world where taking selfies and promoting oneself on social media is the norm. But given the fact that Oscar Wilde died in 1900, it probably makes sense to search for a deeper meaning to these words. In my view, Wilde captures our purpose quite eloquently—that we are put on this earth to grow and develop.
What I’ve come to realize from working with college athletes and coaches that is quite often many of them just do not realize how truly great they could be. This occurs despite the fact that these students are playing athletics at the college level and are very talented. Getting them to truly understand the gap between their historical performance and their actual potential is challenging. When they finally do make the connection that as good as they are now, they have the potential to be even greater, the results can be amazing.
“I think self-awareness is probably the most important thing towards being a champion.” [Billie Jean King]. I agree. Self-awareness is the genesis of success. It’s similar to what they say about history. If you want to understand the future, look to the past. If you want to figure out what you need to do to succeed, you need to look back and see what has worked well for you. And what hasn’t. Basically, you need to understand yourself—your strengths, your weaknesses, likes, dislikes, passions, etc.
How high is honesty on your list of preferred qualities? It can be challenging in this day and age especially when we hear statistics telling us that everyone lies. Does it really pay to be honest? Here’s a story that just might make you step back a moment and think
I’m a big believer in lifelong learning. That’s one of the reasons why I subscribe to blogs and email updates from people I respect. One of these is Valerie Sokolosky, who sent an interesting email about self-awareness that got me thinking. Valerie’s article stressed that leaders need to be self-aware. My contention is that being self-aware shouldn’t pertain to just leaders. Every person who strives to excel needs to be self-aware and nowhere is this more important than in selling.